George Lwandamina says Sunday’s dead-rubber 2017 Africa Cup Group E qualifier against Kenya, is a springboard for next month’s 2018 World Cup qualifier against Nigeria.
Zambia will kick-off their 2018 World Cup Group B qualifying campaign, with a home date against Nigeria on October 3.
Second placed Zambia and bottom of the log Kenya have six and four points respectively heading into their final Group E qualifier, behind leaders Guinea Bissau who have qualified with a four point lead and a game in hand on 10 points after beating Chipolopolo 3-2 last June.
“Every game is a serious game whatever perceptions people have of this match,” Lwandamina said.
“We have the World Cup qualifier coming up and we should establish our starting point, that is how serious this game is.
“Do we have a team that can serious compete during the World Cup qualifiers? Or do we have to start all over again?
“The answer will be known on Sunday.”
Zambia, though, will be without two notable players for the final Group E qualifier at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola.
Goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene, who has barely seen action at Mamelodi Sundowns last season, has been dropped.
Zesco United’s Jacob Banda and Zanaco’s Racha Kola are in a tight battle for that number one shirt in this Sunday’s game.
Highlands Park FC striker Collins Mbesuma will also miss the match but his absence is due to suspension.